Cop saved from burning car: ‘He’s my hero’

Joe Chambers

Mark Kimsey is assimilating to life with crutches.

“I’m still healing. Trying to get used to walking on crutches and not on my feet,” he said. “Doing a lot better than I was a few nights ago.”

The Philadelphia Police officer addressed his injury at City Council chambers shortly after he helped honor 17-year-old Joe Chambers, one of the two men who pulled Kimsey from his burning squad car last weekend after an accident with another car set it ablaze.

“I keep telling people, he’s my hero,” Kimsey said. “I wouldn’t be here without him.”

Kimsey, 30, was responding to a call around 5 p.m. Saturday when he collided with a pickup truck in West Philadelphia. As flames engulfed the cruiser, Chambers and his neighbor, Dante Johnson, 24, pulled Kimsey free.

He said he’s not sure how long he’ll be off duty.

“I still have doctor’s appointments and tests and things I have to go through to figure out what’s wrong with my leg,” he said.

Since the incident, Chambers, a volunteer firefighter in Delaware County, said he’s been thinking about joining either the fire department or the police force full time.

“I’m torn between both,” he said.

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